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Fire crews keep Ponina Fire near Beatty from growing

Photo courtesy Christopher Trotchie

Fire officials said that crews were able to keep the Ponina Fire from growing throughout Monday and overnight, raising containment.

Posted: Apr 20, 2021 10:43 AM
Updated: Apr 20, 2021 10:44 AM

BEATTY, Ore. — Firefighters have been making "excellent progress" on the Ponina Fire, located about five miles north of Beatty in Klamath County, according to the South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership (SCOFMP).

More accurate mapping of the fire area raised its estimated size to 1,641 acres, but officials said that firefighters were able to keep it from actually growing in size. Containment of the fire rose to 40 percent.


Photo courtesy Christopher Trotchie

With containment now well underway, fire crews are working on mop-up within the fire's edge.

"The fire is burning in timber and brush with creeping and smoldering fire behavior," officials said. "There are some interior heavy fuels burning as well as formerly green islands."

Evacuation levels were lowered by the Klamath County Sheriff's Office on Monday to a Level 2, allowing residents to return home with the caveat that they should be prepared to evacuate if conditions change.

Tuesday's update included the news that seven structures have been destroyed by the fire — up from two the day prior — but officials said that they were "mostly outbuildings."

The area saw some rain overnight and into Tuesday morning, and officials said that they expect temperatures to be cooler with another chance of showers. However, dry winds from the northeast are expected to return on Tuesday afternoon, with temperatures warming again over the coming days.

The fire was first reported around 2:30 p.m. on Sunday. After an initial response from firefighters, a local Type 3 Incident Management Team took over control of efforts on Monday morning.

Smoke may still be highly visible in the surrounding areas, including on Highway 140. The Ponina Fire burns in an area with narrow roads, and the public has been advised to avoid the fire area for their own safety and that of responding fire crews.

"Even with cooler weather and some precipitation, fuels remain dormant and dry, meaning fire can carry quickly," SCOFMP said. "As cold fronts approach, winds can be fast and erratic, leading to spotting and rapid fire spread even from a small fire like a campfire. The public is urged to use extreme caution with fire on private and wildlands, especially as the area is already seeing early wildfires."

Klamath County suspended open burning last week, and that suspension is expected to continue amid the current dry conditions.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 387485

Reported Deaths: 5116
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah59768836
Washington41571393
Marion39592504
Clackamas32426376
Lane29856354
Jackson24672350
Deschutes23182185
Umatilla15087180
Linn14488178
Douglas13236286
Josephine10057240
Yamhill9665142
Klamath8979145
Polk813698
Benton605137
Malheur591586
Coos5573106
Columbia423855
Jefferson416865
Lincoln357252
Union336854
Crook330156
Wasco314846
Clatsop258335
Baker217531
Tillamook214345
Hood River211337
Morrow197025
Curry190136
Harney119332
Grant108314
Lake104016
Wallowa74713
Sherman1903
Gilliam1844
Wheeler1141
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 5057759

Reported Deaths: 74098
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles152224027074
San Diego4047084319
Riverside3849455306
San Bernardino3718825944
Orange3329505675
Sacramento1674002423
Kern1565171781
Fresno1558992246
Santa Clara1511691922
Alameda1246581499
San Joaquin1070001833
Ventura1036461188
Contra Costa1032921045
Stanislaus910641413
Tulare856141082
San Francisco56614669
San Mateo56058627
Monterey52340625
Solano47422356
Santa Barbara47035548
Merced44807664
Sonoma42912412
Placer41881468
Imperial38128769
Kings35038358
San Luis Obispo31294358
Madera26005311
Shasta25917440
Butte25295309
Santa Cruz22028222
Yolo21451257
Marin18342248
El Dorado18166161
Sutter14494181
Napa13372104
Yuba1070088
Tehama10230129
Humboldt10043117
Nevada9914103
Mendocino848894
Lassen792355
San Benito775977
Tuolumne767790
Lake6990110
Amador573766
Siskiyou470954
Glenn455136
Calaveras435685
Del Norte371242
Colusa323519
Inyo254345
Plumas19127
Mono18294
Mariposa156718
Trinity98817
Modoc7475
Unassigned2430
Sierra2170
Alpine1060
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